(PJM Exclusive) Did Obama and Holder Scuttle Terror Finance Prosecutions?
"By closing down these prosecutions," the source added, "the evidence we’ve collected over the past decade that implicates most of the major Islamic organizations will never see the light of day."
The FBI still has boxes and boxes of stuff that has never even been translated -- just like what happened in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. But it’s already been made public that they have copies of money transfers sent by NAIT [the North American Islamic Trust, which holds the property titles of many of the mosques in America -- Ed.] directly to known Hamas entities and Hamas leaders. Those came out during the [Holy Land Foundation] trial. But what if we won the case against NAIT and its leaders and the U.S. government finds itself the landlord to hundreds of mosques across the country? How well do you think that would that play in the Muslim community?
The actions by the DOJ to crush these prosecutions are just another schizophrenic episode in the U.S. government’s ongoing relationship with Islamic organizations, especially CAIR. After CAIR was named unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land trial, the FBI was forced to cut ties with the group. In an April 2009 letter to Sen. Jon Kyl, FBI Assistant Director Richard Powers said that “the FBI does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner.”
And a February 2010 letter from Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich to four congressmen who inquired about the termination of the relationship between the FBI and CAIR -- just weeks before the DOJ officially ceased further prosecutions, including of CAIR co-founders -- elaborated on the evidence about CAIR that had emerged from the Holy Land trial. Yet, according to my DOJ source, CAIR leaders continue to be regularly received by top DOJ and FBI officials despite the official ban and these statements made to members of Congress.
And just last November, a significant July 2009 memorandum order by Judge Jorge Solis, who supervised the initial Holy Land Foundation trial, was unsealed under direction of the Court of Appeals. It provides the court’s reasons for refusing to remove CAIR and two other prominent Islamic groups, the Islamic Society of North America and NAIT, from the list of unindicted co-conspirators in the case. Judge Solis concluded that “the four pieces of evidence the government relies on, as discussed below, do create at least a prima facie case as to CAIR’s involvement in a conspiracy to support Hamas” (p. 7), specifically naming Omar Ahmad’s part in the conspiracy (p. 6) and adding later that “the Government has produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR, ISNA and NAIT with HLF, the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and with Hamas” (p. 15).
As I reported here at Pajamas Media, FBI Director Robert Mueller reiterated these reasons for cutting ties with CAIR before a recent House Judiciary Committee meeting -- just two days before The Daily Caller reported that White House officials had publicly praised CAIR.
Adding to the hypocrisy, after the Obama administration scuttled the next round of prosecutions in the Hamas terror financing investigation last March, Attorney General Eric Holder gave the prosecutors and FBI investigators in the Holy Land Foundation case the AG’s Award for Distinguished Service last October for their work in the case.
I asked my DOJ source why they decided to come forward now. The source said:
This is a national security issue. We know that these Muslim leaders and groups are continuing to raise money for Hamas and other terrorist organizations. Ten years ago we shut down the Holy Land Foundation. It was the right thing to do. Then the money started going to KindHearts. We shut them down too. Now the money is going through groups like Islamic Relief and Viva Palestina. Until we act decisively to cut off the financial pipeline to these terrorist groups by putting more of these people in prison, they are going to continue to raise money that will go into the hands of killers. And until Congress starts grilling the people inside DOJ and the FBI who are giving these groups cover, that is not going to change. My biggest fear is that Americans are going to die and it will be the very Muslim leaders we are working with who will be directly or indirectly responsible.
But if the U.S. government publicly acknowledges the terror ties of these groups why do they continue to deal with them?
We tried to do what we could during the Bush administration. After 9/11, we had to do something and [the Holy Land Foundation] was the biggest target. If the mistrial hadn’t have happened, we probably would have gone through the second round of prosecutions before the change in administrations.
To say things are different under Obama and Holder would be an understatement. Many of the people I work with at Justice now see CAIR not just as political allies, but ideological allies. They believe they are fighting the same revolution. It’s scary. And Congress and the American people need to know this is going on.
It remains to be seen how Congress, the American people, and the establishment media -- who always seem eager to rise to the defense of CAIR and the other terror-tied Islamic groups -- will proceed.